16 Other Ways to Say “Brain Fart”

If you’re looking for an expression that means you’ve been temporarily forgetful but think the term “brain fart” is simply too uncouth, you’ve come to the right place.

We’ve compiled a list of phrases that you can say instead of “brain fart,” even in professional settings!

Other Ways to Say “Brain Fart”

  • Drawing a blank
  • Scatterbrain
  • Absent-minded
  • Forgetful
  • Mind blank
  • Wool-gathering
  • Heedless
  • Having a moment
  • Memory lapse
  • Blunder
  • Mental block
  • Foggy
  • At a loss
  • Oversight
  • Mental hiccup
  • Synapse lapse


  • The term “brain fart” is considered somewhat rude and should not be used in formal or professional circumstances.
  • As a professional alternative, you can use the phrase “drawing a blank.”
  • As an informal alternative, you can use the phrase “scatterbrain.”

Don’t go anywhere! We’re about to provide some useful example sentences using our favorite professional and informal synonyms for “brain fart.”

Afterward, we’ll discuss whether the term “brain fart” is considered rude. Is this phrase a real word in English?

Drawing a Blank (Professional)

If you’re looking for a professional way to say “brain fart,” we would suggest using the phrase “drawing a blank” instead.

This is an idiomatic phrase that means one is failing to remember something. Although this phrase is idiomatic, it is suitable to use in a professional setting, including in conversations with your boss.

Therefore, we would certainly recommend using this phrase instead of “brain fart” in professional correspondence.

Consider the following example sentences to see this phrase in action:

I was recently in communication with their manager, but I’m afraid I’m drawing a blank when it comes to his name.

I am drawing a blank on the precise time, but I’ll check my calendar and get back to you.

Scatterbrain (Informal)

Another way to say “brain fart” is “scatterbrain.” A scatterbrain is someone who is disorganized or lacking in concentration.

Therefore, we would advise against using this phrase when speaking to clients or your employer, as you would not want to give the impression that you are incompetent.

However, when speaking to friends, family, or colleagues whom you have a close relationship with, it’s okay to use this phrase. After all, they will know you well enough to know that even though you’ve had a forgetful moment, you are using this phrase hyperbolically.

You may prefer to use this synonym if you find “fart” to be a bad word. Or, you can simply use it to switch up your language.

Consider the following examples:

Sorry, I’m a bit of a scatterbrain today – did you want that file sent to the third floor or the fourth?

I get the impression that he is a bit of a scatterbrain at the best of times.

Is “Brain Fart” a Rude Word?

The phrase “brain fart” can certainly come across as rude and vulgar to some audiences. It is for this reason that this phrase should be avoided in formal circumstances or professional correspondence.

However, you may be surprised to learn that “brain fart” is an accepted term in English. It has been recognized by the Oxford Dictionary since 2015.

As such, you can use this phrase in informal circumstances to create humor, especially when you are around people that you are familiar with.

If you’d prefer to use a less contentious phrase, our list of synonyms will certainly help you. Therefore, feel free to bookmark this page next time you want to use an alternative. We’ll save you from a brain fart in more ways than one.